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Road Cycling “It is by riding a bicycle that you learn the contours of a country best, since you have to sweat up the hills and coast down them. Thus you remember them as they actually are, while in a motor car only a high hill impresses you, and you have no such accurate remembrance of country you have driven through as you gain by riding a bicycle.” -- Ernest Hemingway

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Old 05-15-06, 12:11 PM   #1
krazyderek
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Home Made Free Motion Roller Assembly *DONE*

******Update #3 08-28-07, 5:50 PM******




******Update #2 09-22-06, 10:50 PM******

I got around to taking some more pictures of my rollers as per a couple of request's.

I've added the side bumper wheels which are quite handy when watching tv. They're just cheap caster wheels mounted to some Alu Angle Stock that's 3/16" thick, held on by the nut that secures the roller shafter to the frame. My new mag unit has also been on there for a little while and using the remote is great for intervals.



Notice the black marks from my tire on the side bumper wheels.


And a couple of pictures and a diagram showing how exactly i was able to secure the wheels to the roller frame. And YES it is rock solid, the proper bolts do not bend.
You should note that the white metal feet welded to the roller frame are solid steel, thus they can carry the load and sidewary/bending forces from the wheels. I wouldn't recommend this exact setup if your roller frame is made of aluminium.
In the case that you don't have roller feet on the frame that allow for the type of attachment, you could drill holes directly into the frame it's self and have the wheels sticking out of the side, this would of course require you to build up the wooden frame the rollers sit in so that it clears the floor.



Derek.



******Update #1 05-15-06, 03:11 PM*******

Ok all done and tested, my homemade free motion rollers are up and running and i must say it's quite a odd sensation at first. I was able to ride a little smoother, ride with no hands much easier, ride out of the saddle to simulate climbing, and of course sprint out of the saddle and not once did i hit the little red roller i had positioned in front of the assembly for safety.

The skateboard wheels made of bone(very hard) with abec 3 bearings and work perfect and move the rollers perfectly, i don't think i'll have to buy any Alu to make a lighter roller frame out of.
I ended up using a 30" adjustable elastic at the 22" mark and barely stretched it out and clamped it to the rollers. Looks like the key is not have any tension on the elastics to allow for suble movements in the rollers.

Anyways, here's the video(10mb mpeg1) and a screenshot for while you wait.




*************** Original Post ****************

I received a couple of questions about these so i thought i'd start a thread. I just finished the frame for these yesterday so i'm still working thru the fitting and glitch phase.



-The rails are rock maple with a grove for the wheel instead of C shape Alu so that you can remove the rollers at will.
-End peices are just regular 2x4 with deck bolt's fastening them to the rails.
-Rubber bands, are a type of solid rubber bungie i picked up at canadian tire. In the photo their attached with quick clamps for trial only eventually i'll drill a series of hole's which will allow adjusting the rubber band's by means of a screw which is threaded into the hole's.

-Wheels are where the problem starts. I used caster wheels from Home Depot removed them from their casing, and mounted them on SS bolts that were threaded into the steel legs of the rollers. With 200lbs on the whole unit the wheels have a little resistance when starting to roll so it's a little "sluggish". I made sure the bolt's holding the wheels weren't bending under weight. Also made sure they were adjusted a best possible to made sure they could roll well. Even tried to put some metal stips under the wheel thinking maybe the maple wasn't a stiff enough surface for the wheels.
I've concluded it's the wheels them selve's . For a responsive resistance free roll i'll have to switch to some hard bone skateboard wheels which will have bearings in them.

-The rollers them selve's may also pose a small problem, this particular model of rollers has a steel tubing frame, just the white peice's of metal probably weight 10lbs each. I'm highly considering picking up some Alu square tubing and making new roller rails to reduce the weight of the rollers so they'll be more likely to move back and forth. The idea being that reducing the weight of the rollers will reduce the amount of energy needed to push the rollers in one direction or another, thus making it easier for the rollers to slide under me to stay with my bike instead of my bike rolling off the front of the rollers.

-Guard rails. I'm hoping to not have to use or make guard rails, most of the videos on the e-motion rollers website show the rollers just moving under the bike, in only one instance does one of the bikers actually touch the front bumper.

Right now the setup does move a bit under me especially if i accerate, but i can still feel the bike wanting to roll forward, especially if i stand up. With the new wheels and possibly new frame i should have a well functioning free motion set of rollers.

Feedback and comments welcome.

Side Note:
I also seemed to have dropped my mag unit so i guess i'll have to buy a new one with a remote cable
Really i was trying to remove one of the spacers on the axle to get it to line up better with my rear roller but i couldn't get either end peice off even after removing the insert screw, and oiling it well. This after having greased the whole assembly just last month made me a little angry and well... mr hammer made me feel much better.

Last edited by krazyderek; 08-28-07 at 02:43 PM. Reason: update
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Old 05-15-06, 12:30 PM   #2
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Looks good. What exactly is the purpose of the wooden frame?

edit: ok, I see what's it's suposed to do, but what is the purpose of the entire roller assembly to move linearly?

Last edited by roadfix; 05-15-06 at 12:42 PM.
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Old 05-15-06, 12:33 PM   #3
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The rollers are free to move forwards and backwards a bit within the frame, but they are spring-loaded (by the bungees) to the center position.

Why this is beneficial is still a bit of a ??? to me.

I wonder if you could use the ball-bearing drawer slides from the hardware store to get your linear motion with less sideways play.
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Old 05-15-06, 12:36 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Phantoj
The rollers are free to move forwards and backwards a bit.
To what purpose?
more power ? better balance? smoother spin?

what is the advantage over regular rollers?

marty (avowed roller rider)
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Old 05-15-06, 12:53 PM   #5
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I think the point is that you can hammer a bit more violently without throwing the bike off the rollers. I've never actually tossed / pushed / jerked my bike off rollers but I'll never fault a man for plinking around with tools.
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Old 05-15-06, 12:56 PM   #6
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Sorry i guess not everyone has see the Inside Ride E-Motion Roller System.

The idea is to provide a more realistic ride with a bike that will actually move forward and aft just like on the road, it also alows you to stand up a bit better, aswell as sprint out of the saddle on rollers.
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Old 05-15-06, 01:00 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SpongeDad
I think the point is that you can hammer a bit more violently without throwing the bike off the rollers. I've never actually tossed / pushed / jerked my bike off rollers but I'll never fault a man for plinking around with tools.
Interesting point. Then perhaps 'hanging' the entire roller assembly, instead of riding on caster wheels will give you a no-resistance linear movement, even if only a couple of inches.

edit: sorry, bad idea (hanging)...after viewing the video above....
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Old 05-15-06, 01:02 PM   #8
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So what's the total cost krazyderek? Videotape yourself!
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Old 05-15-06, 04:34 PM   #9
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Mmm… "E-Motion Roller System" looks to me like rollers for those people who can't ride rollers…

Why not just learn to ride rollers? …and save yourself $500

er…

- Wil
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Old 05-15-06, 09:10 PM   #10
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Well the maple i had kicking around, the wheels were 2$ each, but we'll see how much the new one's are, and i'll just pull the bearings from my old skateboard wheels that are to big. i know the alu tubing is 20$ for enough to make a set of rollers. I'd say i'm well under 80$ even with having to do things twice to get it just right.

I do agree that it takes a bit more finess to ride rollers, and i definitly can. It was just sort of agervating not being able to do any sprints, or alot of climbing simulation indoors over the winter. I think it just feels more realistic, maybe i'm taking away from what rollers are supposed to do to your trainning though, of course i'll always have the option to just take it off the free motion frame and lay it on the ground so...
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Old 05-19-06, 11:43 AM   #11
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A little update, i finished redrilling and mounting the skateboard wheels to the frame and the rollers slide much better along the wodden frame so i'll expand the slot in the wooden rails for the larger skateboard wheels and then fine tune the tension on the rubber bungies. I'm starting to get the feeling there really isn't a whole lot of tension on them, just barely enough to keep the rollers centered.

I'll post a video in a little while.
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Old 05-20-06, 01:19 PM   #12
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Ok all done and tested, my homemade free motion rollers are up and running and i must say it's quite a odd sensation at first. I was able to ride a little smoother, ride with no hands much easier, ride out of the saddle to simulate climbing, and of course sprint out of the saddle and not once did i hit the little red roller i had positioned in front of the assembly for safety.

The skateboard wheels made of bone(very hard) with abec 3 bearings and work perfect and move the rollers perfectly, i don't think i'll have to buy any Alu to make a lighter roller frame out of.
I ended up using a 30" adjustable elastic at the 22" mark and barely stretched it out and clamped it to the rollers. Looks like the key is not have any tension on the elastics to allow for suble movements in the rollers.

Anyways, here's the video(10mb mpeg1) and a screenshot for while you wait.



And some more pictures..






Derek.
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Old 05-20-06, 01:48 PM   #13
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cool... ive never tried rollers, but it looks damn difficult! Awesome job on the fabrication!
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Old 05-20-06, 02:23 PM   #14
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Patent it - quick!
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Old 05-20-06, 02:54 PM   #15
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Patent it - quick!
Its been done before, krazyderek probably saved $700.00 making it himself

Inside Ride E-Motion Roller System
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Old 05-20-06, 03:09 PM   #16
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Very well done! That's awesome and you just saved yourself $700!!!
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Old 05-20-06, 07:46 PM   #17
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Their not as polished looking as the Inside Ride one's but like he said, i saved lots of moolay I almost can't wait for winter now, i'm going to get such a good base in over the winter... climbing without the cold air lung burning, sprinting without 4 or 5 layers on my upper body it'll be great. Just waitting for my new mag unit to arrive, right now i spin out when sprinting, i leveled off at 135rpm in that video, but was only doing 600w
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Old 05-20-06, 09:04 PM   #18
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awesome build, im jealous! any thoughts of putting rolling front wheel guards like on the Inside Ride ones? i've been thinking of trying to put some on my rollers, but cant really figure out a way to effectively do it. any ideas? (not to hijack the post..... )
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Old 05-20-06, 09:25 PM   #19
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I checked out the video - nice job! You did a pretty good job with the whole thing, and I apologise if my earlier comments were somewhat dismissive. I can see exactly where the free motion thing is coming from and what the attraction might be - I still think that $700+ for the commercial version is a bit steep, but hey, perhaps you could get commissions and start a business…

- Wil
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Old 05-21-06, 04:59 AM   #20
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Nice build.... I hope it works well for you over the winter... alas Im still on my fluid trainer
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Old 05-21-06, 06:08 AM   #21
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Sweet roller! Do you think you have enough picture of the steps you took to build it to put it on instructables? I sure would apreciate it (and probably do it as well!)
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Old 05-21-06, 08:10 AM   #22
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Thanks for all the positive feedback guys


Quote:
Originally Posted by allez
any thoughts of putting rolling front wheel guards like on the Inside Ride ones? i've been thinking of trying to put some on my rollers, but cant really figure out a way to effectively do it.
Yup, the wheel thing is really simple actually the tricky part there is just finding the right size wheel then i was going to use a hardwood block or a block of UHMW plastic to get it up to the right height in the front. In the back, you can almost just screw a wheel to the roller frame between the two rollers. I might look into that this week and update the thread accordingly, as for front and aft bumpers, really don't need them, MAYBE a front, but it's kind of last on the drawing board. I'd thought a peice of PVC with end caps drilled for a threaded rod of metal going thru it with, nuts and washer's on either end to keep it centered would suffice. I'd thought that mounting them right ontop of the 2x4 end peices would be the easiest way of doing it.


Quote:
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....and I apologise if my earlier comments were somewhat dismissive. I can see exactly where the free motion thing is coming from and what the attraction might be - I still think that $700+ for the commercial version is a bit steep...
No problem, i actually thought it was a stupid idea when i saw it too a couple months ago, but a winter on the rollers tends to let your mind wander a bit
As for the price, 795$ is quite a bit, but not if you consider good sets of rollers with mag units retails for upwards of 250$. Once you factor that in, along with all the bells and whistles the inside ride rollers have like the bumpers and side wheels, then factor in the free motion system, AND the nice all Alu construction, 800$ seems like a good price, at least for now. I think inside ride is targeting more teams that have the BLING to throw arround. Perhaps the price will come done in a year or two to a more reasonable 499$ or something.


Quote:
Originally Posted by iNewton
Sweet roller! Do you think you have enough pictures of the steps you took to build it to put it on instructables? I sure would apreciate it (and probably do it as well!)
Well i really don't want to steel from inside ride. I'll be happy to take a couple more pictures and help out anyone who'd like to make some for themselve's but i don't really want to post detailed plans on how to make them. Actually i figured out most of the assembly just by studying the step by step assembly photo's inside ride has posted on their site in "production process" section of their photo gallery. That and my years of experience with lego

Last edited by krazyderek; 05-21-06 at 08:58 AM.
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Old 05-21-06, 04:40 PM   #23
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Really doesn't deserve to be on the second page. How noisy is it? Great video by the way.
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Old 05-21-06, 05:03 PM   #24
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It's no louder then the original rollers, the skateboard wheels are turning maybe one 1/4 revolution each time it slides back and forth during normal riding. The actual tire roller sound is still louder. Maybe it's different with an all alu version, the wooden frame might quiet things too.

I'm definitly going to work on some side bumper wheels cause i kinda got cocky when i was ridding them today and slipped off the side when i was trying to sit back down

About the video, i'm really sorry about the crappy quality, my mom's HP digicam takes horrible quality, and really dark movies, i wish i still had my canon, it took much better quality movies but alas, i had to return it for financial reasons.
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Old 05-21-06, 05:05 PM   #25
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Wow....fanstastic job and it really works!
I know I've got an old set of heavy steel Paramount Rollers rusting away in my garage somewhere.....
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